Yew Tree Lodge, London, Hillingdon Building

Yew Tree Lodge, Hillingdon Building, Sheltered Housing London, Photo, Design, Property

Yew Tree Lodge London

Sheltered Housing Development, Hillingdon, UK – design by Duggan Morris Architects

21 May 2009

Yew Tree Lodge

Sheltered housing project offers a subtle yet contemporary solution for London Borough of Hillingdon

Design: Duggan Morris Architects

Address: Pringle Gardens, London SW16 1RZ

Phone: 020 8677 3982

Yew Tree Lodge

Yew Tree Lodge, designed by Duggan Morris Architects, is a new sheltered housing scheme for 12 special needs tenants who were living in out-dated accommodation in Hillingdon, Middlesex.

Sheltered housing is a sector often side lined and ignored due to its perceived limited architectural potential. Duggan Morris Architects challenged these perceptions with a fresh approach and the result is a well designed, flexible, functional contemporary building for client Look Ahead Housing and Care, which sits sensitively next to its listed Arts and Crafts neighbour.

Yew Tree Lodge Yew Tree Lodge Hillingdon Yew Tree Lodge London
Yew Tree Lodge images : Edmund Sumner

Great efforts have been employed by the team to deliver a high quality building of lasting durability, that is able to respond to changing requirements of the tenants. Designed to exacting requirements, the building has been detailed to allow for future flexibility. Additional units can be installed into open plan internal spaces if required and hollow panels above door openings
can be removed to allow for the future installation of pulley and winch systems as needed.

An efficiently planned L-shaped building provides 12 self contained residential units, with semi communal internal spaces and landscaped external spaces and lawns. The scheme adopts a long low profile of two asymmetric wings conjoined at right angles. At the junction of the two wings a clearly identified, recessed main entrance is located with full height, full width frameless glass panelling, opening into a double height void finished in vibrant yellow. Being predominantly south facing, the entrance comes alive as light trickles across the face of the tiling, picking out the variations in colour and finish.

The residential units are accessed from a corridor which runs along each wing. The corridors are single loaded, thus allowing for a series of full height windows along their length which face into the landscape. These allow natural light, rather than the typical fluorescent, to flood the spaces. The internal spaces have a very contemporary feel. Each unit is simply furnished with open plan living/kitchen space, a large disabled bathroom and double bedroom. The living rooms and bedrooms are provided with full height windows, and the upper floors fitted with projecting bays, creating a niche in which the tenant can sit and enjoy the landscape. A major challenge for the client, design team and contractor was the incredibly restrictive contextual issues. The scheme is located within an established site occupied by a Grade II listed Arts and Crafts building by Edward Prior.

The team ensured that the building maintains an appropriate appearance sensitive to this existing setting. The façade is dominated by brick detailing and terracotta roof tiles, both a soft rust coloured brown. The appearance created is of a free flowing surface treatment wrapping up over the building and extending out over the surrounding terrace areas and walkways. This elegant but robust skin draws its reference from the nearby Arts and Crafts building, but employs a wholly contemporary idiom in which large panels of glass (some incorporated as cantilevered box bays) are set flush into the surface and located in a loose rhythm breaking the mass down.

The junction between wall face and roof is expressed with a continuous recessed gutter, acting as an over sized shadow gap, which extends up over the gable ends, rendering the roof as a delicately placed cap. The external landscape treatment continues the external building palette and is robust and maintenance free. Communal lawns, planted borders, seating and outdoor ‘rooms’ create zones of activity and privacy both to the front and rear of the building.

Mary Duggan, director, Duggan Morris Architects: “Sheltered housing is an overlooked sector when it comes to design. This shouldn’t be the case. Good design makes a difference to how these spaces work for the people that use them; their disability and special needs requirements informed the design and we challenged all of the details from external palette to skirting boards. The reality is that to most of these tenants, accommodation is central to their lives, so the spaces that they exist in are extremely important.”

Duggan continues: “Another challenge was dealing with the close proximity of the neighbouring listed Arts and Crafts building. We decided to adopt a reductivist strategy, streamlining details, material palette and massing, to engineer a subtle yet contemporary solution.”

Consultation throughout the design process was extensive.

Yew Tree Lodge – Building Information

ARCHITECTS: Duggan Morris Architects
CLIENT/DEVELOPER: Look Ahead Housing Care
CONTRACTOR: Durkan Ltd
PROJECT MANAGER: Appleyard and Trew
SERVICES ENGINEER: AJD Design
SUSTAINABILITY ENGINEER: ECDA
STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: Michael Hadi Associates
ECOLOGY: Arup
LANDSCAPE: Watkins Dally

Yew Tree Lodge by Duggan Morris Architects information from Caro

Duggan Morris


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